Cookies, Planes & Counseling

Everyone has bad days., but cookies, a few paper planes, and a little counseling can make a big difference in turning that bad day around.

Sometimes my days start with a few students coming into my office stressed, upset, and really down. I’m sure you can relate… the type of day where everything seems to be going wrong.

One of my favorite things to keep on hand is a variety of cookies. It is tempting to bring them home, but sharing them with the kiddos helps to change their mood.

As I let them pick their favorite, I gave them each student a piece of paper.  I had them write down everything that was stressing them out.  After they made their list I had them circle the top 3 things that were bothering them.  We then broke those 3 things down into 3 specific things.  For example:  

  • Friends:
  1. Want to spend more time with them
  2. Need to lose those that aren’t really my friend
  3. I need to be treated equally as well as I treat others
  • Family:
  1. Tell my sister to stop wearing my clothes
  2. Try talking to my mom about what is bothering me
  3. Spend less time in my room

We talk about the things we can control and what we can’t. Then, we discuss strategies on how to let stress go. When we are finished, we make our papers into airplanes and send them soaring across the room.

Here are some pictures of our work and airplane landing in the trash and getting rid of our problems.

As they leave my room you can feel the gloominess leaving and the smiles returning. I don’t think the cookies on the way out hurt either.

What strategies do you use in individual or small group counseling?  Let me know.  Leave a comment or join one of the groups below:

Caught In The Middle School Counselors (Facebook Group)

High School Counselors’ Network(Facebook Group)

Elementary School Counselor Exchange (Facebook Group)

The Middle School Counselor App

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